PHILIPSBURG, Sint Maarten – In keeping with Minister Lee’s vision of openness and transparency to attract candidates in St. Maarten to his Cabinet for the Ministry of Public Health, Social Development & Labor (VSA), a public recruitment process was conducted which resulted in an overwhelming amount of applicants (over 100).
All applicants displayed the necessary commitment to making St Maarten a better place to live and were willing to put country above self, however only a handful could be selected. “I would like to whole heartedly show my appreciation to those who showed interest in serving their country,” said Minister Lee in an invited press statement on Tuesday.
The selected persons to be a part of the Cabinet were chosen based on their experience, educational background, vision and overall personality to ensure that a team was put together of persons that complimented one other.
“My new Cabinet is extremely dedicated and are committed to doing their best to make the Ministry of VSA a model of openness and efficiency that delivers the most value to the people we that represent. They are a new addition to my family as most of my time is now being spent at work with them, working together to come up with innovative solutions to the many problems facing Sint Maarten. Therefore with great pleasure I would like to officially introduce my cabinet staff to the general public,” said Minister Lee.
The new cabinet consists of five professional staff members which include:
- Cornelis Bouwman (Senior Specialist) who is a Medical Doctor by profession, has a Master’s in Business Administration and has last worked as an Occupational Physician at Shell in the Netherlands. At Shell, Mr. Bouwman helped to bring down health care costs through his various prevention initiatives. On the team he has been assigned to providing the necessary advice as it pertains to improving health care on Sint Maarten.
- Ellen Knoppel (Legal Advisor) who is a Lawyer by profession, has a Masters in Law and recently worked at the Cabinet of Justice as a Legal Specialist for 3 years. She is the legal mind on the team ensuring that all legislation and documents are in line with current regulations. Her tasks will also revolve around assisting the relevant Departments to amend the necessary legislation which are outdated and to help produce new legislation based on Ministers Lee’s vision.
- Alissa Rios (Policy Advisor) who has a Master’s in Public Administration specializing in Public Policy, Lobbying and Media. She has recently worked at the Cabinet of Education, Culture, Youth & Sports as a Policy Advisor and provides the necessary expertise as it pertains to the operations of Government and providing the political sensitivity needed to operate at the level of Council of Ministers. Since she was 15, Alissa has been a part of the Government apparatus through various internships and job placements thus allowing her a network that extends throughout all Ministries.
- Selby Philip (Policy Advisor) who has a Master’s in Public Administration. He most recently worked for 4 years at the Department of Labor as a Policy Advisor, within the Ministry of VSA. He provides the necessary labor expertise and network. His knowledge obtained through his degree also provides the team with insight into Public Management techniques of the 21st century.
- Samira George (Executive Secretary/PR) who has 2 Associate Degrees in Business Management and Business Information Management, was transferred from Stafbureau of the Ministry of VSA. There she obtained a vast amount of experience in the field of Public Health, Social Development and Labor as a Secretary to the Secretary General for the past 4 years. Her organizational skills provides the necessary structure for the team to operate efficiently.
In addition, to complete the team Mr. Roy Marlin has volunteered his time to serve as a political advisor. His many years of experience in Government as a Civil servant, Commissioner, Island Council Member and Member of Parliament, equips him to provide the team and the Minister with advice for a range of issues when needed. Mr. Jim Rosen who has a financial background has been contracted as a consultant for a symbolic guilder per year to act as Minister’s right hand throughout his tenure, providing the team with guidance and expertise.
Minister Lee is confident that his Cabinet is efficient, focused and are professionals who are able to defend the interests of the people of Sint Maarten. Since taking office and in the weeks and months to come, Minister Lee and his team are working diligently to take strong and decisive action to bring real and tangible change to assist the people of Sint Maarten. “There is no better place to make a positive impact on the everyday life of the people than through the Ministry of VSA”, said Minister Lee.
Source: 721 news Minister Lee Introduces His Cabinet Staff